Bedad’s Store


It was a large store next to the road,

Old, used, smelling of kerosene and old cloth.

In front, next to the road, was a gas pump

With its glass tank with gallon markings on top.

In back was a small step with three levels

And a hinged half-door.


“M’sieu Edas, vous venez au magasin!”

 “Mr. Edas, please come to the store.”

And Mr. Edas would come,

Suspenders holding up his khaki pants

He would lead me into the store, and

There on the right was the kerosene tank

There on the left was a stand holding brooms.

Toward the counter was a red Coca-Cola box

Whose sliding door would reveal Coke bottles

Nestled in cold water.


There to the left was the dry goods room

Screened off against mice and rats.

It held pants, shirts, dresses, socks, ties, shoes.

There to the right was the counter

With its scale and trays of credit books.

There behind the counter was a wall with shelves

Holding a world of canned goods, and

Between this wall and the red Coca-Cola machine,

Were hoes, shovels, cane knives, crowbars,

Kegs of nails.


Old and beautiful was Mr. Bedad’s store,

Rich in memories.


--September 24, 2013